Joseph JunAs a big fan of SQL Compare and after being impressed by SQL Source Control, I was excited when I got a message to try out a new Red Gate product, SQL Connect.

While SQL Source Control and SQL Connect offer the same underlying ability – adding a database to source control – the key difference is that SQL Source Control works in tandem with SQL Server Management Studio whereas SQL Connect allows the ability to work on your database directly from Visual Studio.

The ability to continue working on different aspects of an application without switching environments is a blessing – think of the amount of time that’s lost and the disruptions that you usually go through tabbing through open windows or using preview windows. Some key benefits are:

  • I’m mentioning it again because it really is critical: the ability to work on application-related and database-related projects in a single development environment.
  • Ability to create and execute queries and stored procedures from Visual Studio.
  • If some team members are already using SQL Source Control, SQL Connect can use the same repository.

The setup process is straightforward and simple so let’s go through a new installation.

1. If you don’t have a TFS hosting account, use the sign-up form and take advantage of the 30-day free trial that we offer.

2. Make sure that you have configured your client and I’d recommend creating a new Team Project using the instructions available in our knowledge base if you’re evaluating SQL Connect.

3. Before proceeding any further, take a look at the software requirements for SQL Connect.

4. If you have Visual Studio open, save any work and then close all instances that you have open.

5. Download the 28-day trial version of SQL Connect and then run the installer. Make sure that SQL Connect is selected and you can un-check SQL Prompt.

6. After the installation completes, open Visual Studio and you’ll see the SQL Connect window.

If you close this window, you can re-open it by going to: View > SQL Connect.It’s not something that I’ll be covering but note that you can import from an existing SQL Source Control project at this point as well.

7. Click Create New SQL Connection Project or if you closed the window, you can create a new project and then click the SQL Connect template.

8. After your project is created, you can connect to a database.

9. After the project is created, you’ll see all of the database-related objects in the Solution Explorer.

10. From the Solution Explorer window, you can right-click your project and then add it to source control.

11. Select the Team Project and then specify a location.

12. As an example, I’ll modify an existing table.

13. Now, all that’s left is to synchronize the change.

SQL Connect allows for much required convenience – something that I always welcome – and it’s definitely worth checking out if you’re not already using SQL Source Control.

For some further information and an instructional video, check out Red Gate’s Getting Started guide on SQL Connect and for updates, you can check their recent changes to SQL Connect.

At the time of this writing, Red Gate is offering DiscountASP.NET users a 20% discount on SQL Connect! Check the Control Panel Marketplace for details.

 

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